Elections in Hard Times: Building Stronger Democracies in the 21st Century

Elections in Hard Times: Building Stronger Democracies in the 21st Century

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Thomas Edward Flores
Cambridge University Press, 9/1/2016
EAN 9781107584631, ISBN10: 1107584639

Paperback, 298 pages, 22.9 x 15.2 x 1.7 cm
Language: English
Originally published in English

Why are 'free and fair' elections so often followed by democratic backsliding? Elections in Hard Times answers this critical question, showing why even clean elections fail to advance democracy when held amidst challenging structural conditions. The book opens with a comprehensive, accessible synthesis of fifty years of research on elections and democratization, a resource for experts, policymakers, and students. It then develops a new theory of why elections fail in countries with little democratic history or fiscal resources, and a history of violent conflict. In a series of five empirical chapters, the book leverages an eclectic mix of cross-national data, short case studies and surveys of voters to support this theory. It closes with a careful examination of popular strategies of democracy promotion, evaluating steps designed to support elections. This book will attract academic experts on democratization and elections, students and policymakers.

Part I. From Elections to Democracy
Theory and Evidence
1. Introduction
2. Why have elections failed to deliver? An answer
3. The third wave(s) and the electoral boom
Part II. Challenges Facing Elections in Developing Countries
4. The ephemeral power of contingent legitimacy
5. Experience matters
democratic stock and elections
6. Starved states
fiscal space and elections
7. Violent votes
conflict and elections
Part III. Democracy Promotion for the Twenty-First Century
8. Democracy promotion for the twenty-first century
9. Conclusions